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Severe Cramping

LauraSue
Posts: 2
Joined: Mar 2003

Hello, I'm writing today in order to help my dear Mother find some relief. She had a colon resection in Dec. 2002. She just finished 5 1/2 weeks of radiation (5 days a week) and 5 weeks of 24 hour a day 5fu. This is the first week she's been off her treatment and more miserable now than ever. Her major complaints are sereve cramping in her lower abdomin and back pain that she equates to the back labor she had while giving birth and also terrible pain in her rectum. She is also having many many bowel movements. She takes sitz baths all the time as well as using proctozone cream for her rectum. As for pain management, she has a 75mg duragesic pain patch and takes Norco. I'm going to suggest using Metamucil to her to slow down the bowl movements. She has no appetite and hardly eats. Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you all.

latimer
Posts: 3
Joined: Nov 2002

I had resection in October, 2002. I was very lucky in that I did not have to have chemo or any other treatment.
I did have lots of digestive problems after surgery, the almost continous bowel movements, sore anus, and terrible gas pains usually midday.
My doctors were almost no help in dealing with these problems.
Since you have undergone therapy you probably don't have as much latitude as I had in altering diet.
I would suggest keeping a diary recording food and liquid intake and seeing what your system can handle best. Additionally, I tried the Metamucil and it made the gas much worst. I would suggest Citrucel. It comes in a powder you mix with water and pills which are easy to take on the run.
Citrucell helped me a bunch. Also, I believe that after a while your bowel gets over the great shock it experienced and the remaining colon starts removing liguid at a greater rate than it did before. When and if this happens your mother may start having fewer and fewer bowel movements.
After I recovered from the surgery I went on a diet and started walking. I used the Adkins diet and have noticed a great decease in gas pains and in bowel movements. I do not know if this a result of my diet and exercise plan or if it is just natural healing. A have to think that the low carb diet eliminates a lot of food items that might ferment in my gut.
Anyway, I wish you and your mother all the best. I know how down you must be, but I believe it will get better. It has been five months since my surgery and I am only now getting back to a somewhat pre surgical state.
My mother had colon cancer many years ago and she experienced the same things I am experiencing.
Remember, colon cancer is hereditary so do not forget about yourself. Make sure you check with your doctor and get checked out. That was how my cancer was caught early.
God Bless both you and your mother.

LauraSue
Posts: 2
Joined: Mar 2003

Thanks so much for your suggestions and support. Thankfully her bowel movements seem to be easing up. We went to the doctor yesterday and now he wants to do more chemo. This time for 6 months..6 weeks on and 2 weeks off and the main side effect is diarrhea. Just what she needs! She had her surgery in the begining of December. Just as she was recovering from that she was hit with what we all thought was a stomach flu which turned out to be a bacterial infection. She suffered with diarrhea from that from the week before Chirstmas until the end of Jan. Then came the chemo & radiation. It's april now and her bowels are just starting to adjust but she still feels like crap. (no pun intended!) I don't know if she can endure 6 more months of this. The doc said she has a 30% chance of the cancer coming back into her liver or lungs without the additional chemo. She is 69 years old and in good health otherwise. Oh, what to do, what to do!
Oh well. Thanks for letting me vent and sorry for the rambling. I really welcome anyones thoughts or comments. Thanks.

latimer
Posts: 3
Joined: Nov 2002

I haven't checked this board out in a couple of weeks so I just saw your response to my suggestions. I hope that my suggestions helped your mother. I'm still not 100%, but I'm getting better everyday. Hope your mother does to.

hyler1
Posts: 12
Joined: Feb 2001

My mother also had a colon resection and a hysterectomy only 4 weeks ago. She is supposed to see an onocologist tomorrow but I am doubtful she will go. She is having the same symtoms you have described, frequent bowel movements, pain around the anus, and extreme back pain. We were advised by her doctor to take her to the emergency room tonight for xrays and blood work and they could not find a cause. Thanks so much for the response. I will show it to her tomorrow so she will know that she is not alone and that there is hope that it will get better.

Katie456
Posts: 2
Joined: May 2003

My mother had a resection about four weeks ago after finishing a 5 week radiation/chemo routine. (same thing your mom had). When the doctors went in to create the iliostomy, they noticed that part of her small intestine had been shrunken. Our doctor said that it was probably the radiation that hit it. She was in severe pain and very, very uncomfortable throughout the radiation. Maybe the radiation hit some areas that could be causing this pain. The doctor said that if after her next round of chemo and the reversing of the ostomy, that it is still small, they may go in and remove that part of it. Don't know if it helps. But I have found any information to be useful. Good luck.

Kati

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